When building a new pool or renovating an old one, it’s important to know the pros and cons of saltwater and chlorine pools.
Saltwater pools are becoming increasingly popular as people learn about the benefits saltwater pools offer.
However, the biggest myth surrounding saltwater pools is that they do not contain chlorine because the water is sanitized using salt. Instead, a salt chlorine generator is used to disinfect it.
The saltwater is run through the generator, which breaks down the salt and water into hypochlorous acid and hydrogen. The acid replaces the chlorine product to disinfect the water.
- Unlike chlorine pools, saltwater pools are slightly less aggressive to those with sensitive skin, eyes, or hair.
- It’s safer because it does not have to physically handle chlorine, which can be a hazard to pool owners if not handled/stored correctly.
- Saltwater is softer than chlorine water.
- The system is more expensive.
- Saltwater is corrosive, so pipes, tile, coping, handrails, ladders, etc., can take a beating from this water.
- The pool requires a salt-friendly material around the pool deck.
- It forms highly elevated pH levels (the pH balance is important in maintaining water clarity).
- Saltwater pool systems are more complex and prone to having needed components not working correctly.
The chlorine pool has been around for many years and uses proper chlorine levels to fight bacteria in pool water. The chemicals break down and kill/prevent bacteria and algae.
- Chlorine pools are more cost-effective.
- Easy to use- buy chlorine tablets and regularly put them in the chlorinator.
- Chlorine disinfects pool water, kills bacteria, and prevents algae growth.
- Chlorine pools use less electricity. Saltwater pools require unique equipment, converting salt to chlorine.
- High chlorine amounts can be harsh on sensitive skin, eyes, and hair.
- Other chemicals, such as balancing agents, must be added consistently.
- Chlorine must be stored properly. You may have to dedicate an exclusive moisture-free area to keep components active.
When a homeowner tries to find the best pool for their needs, some factors will help them choose, including:
By comparing the pros and cons of having a chlorine or saltwater pool, a homeowner should be able to make an informed decision that they won’t regret immediately after purchasing the pool. Whether choosing a saltwater pool or a chlorine pool will likely need testing the water regularly. It is easier to use pH and ORP sensors, which will help you measure and adjust chlorine levels.
Chlorine systems are relatively simple to use compared to saltwater systems, which rely on a complex chlorine generator and are easier to maintain. Unlike saltwater systems that cause corrosion to metal over time, chlorine does not cause significant damage to pool parts.